Economics and Morality
. Voin                                                                                                                                        03/02/2009
      As for socialism, then link the economy and morality declared to the tenets of Marxism and
in the folk sayings. "From each according to his ability, to each according to his work" - is not only an economic postulate, it is also moral one, establishing economic justice in Marx's understanding of it. People saying of the period over-ripe socialism states: "If you think that you pay us, you also may think that we will work for you”. This is the appraisement by the people of this most Marxian justice in its real incarnation, i. e. it is once again the moral of the economy. In this passage from Marx's formula to folk’s one we can see obvious influence of the moral state of society on the success or not success of the socialist economy. As long as people believed in the Marxist idea and honorably served her, the Soviet economy was developing enough successfully. When faith is gone and there was, therefore, the demoralization of society, the economy collapsed, and behind her, and the Union.
    The main problem of Marxism was perhaps in a misunderstanding of the relationship of morality and the economy. Marx believed that morality is a function of the economic system, labor relations, is completely determined by them.
He believed that under capitalism the workers, not being owners of the means of production, are not interested in the result of labor, but under socialism, they - the owners, working conscientiously for the benefit of society and therefore the productivity of labor under socialism will necessarily be higher. But it turned out the opposite. This happened because under socialism the workers did not actually owners of the means of production, but real owner of them is nomenclature. And when the workers understand this, then come "if you think that you pay us,  think also that we will work.
      But why, under socialism
, contrary to expectations of Marx, the nomenclature, but not workers became the real owners of enterprises,?

   Marx, among other things, have the theory of the gradual withering away of the state. It shall wither away under communism, and then some kind of man-made paradise on earth will come. But under socialism state is still necessary, because socialism – still is not paradise, but better (so he thought) than under capitalism.

But why, one wonders, Marx was against state? Well, Marx wrote that the state is a violence, and therefore - not good. And it is absolutely true. But it seemed to me that Marx had yet another reason not to love the state, which he felt intuitively, but do not fully think about it. The fact that the state is not just for no reason at all the violence. It is primarily a management. Society need management always, including under communism, if it is possible and will come someday. But management is a power. And here morality, independent, contrary to Marx, from the system, intermeddle in the case. Marx, based on its erroneous position on the dependence of morality on the system, believed that the power under socialism would be absolutely moral, and being able to manage the country in every way it pleases, will voluntarily relinquish plants, factories, etc., and give to workers themselves to rule it. But contrary to expectations of Marx, the moral nature of people in general and in power, in particular, has not changed in the blink of an eye with the victory of socialist revolution and the people who have received political power, did not want to leave to themselves only the general, the political administration of the country, and business management to transfer to workers . As a result they got "If you're thinking ...".
The management of common property by the nomenclature was also not effective. Nomenclature was even less moral than the people. Actually, the decay of socialism, as shown above, started from decay nomenclatura. Although the financial position of representatives of the nomenclature was much better than the people, but its representatives did not care so much about the success of the common cause, but about personal promotion on the career ladder. Ultimately, it came down to a total theft and idleness, as  on the top so below. More precisely, were, of course,  honest people, especially among ordinary, not the nomenclature. They were even not so little, but the tone was set by crooks and loafers mediocre, which took seats not on law, not according to their abilities. They also watch to power, taking care of their personal interest, contrary to the interests of society. And it decided the case.     

Thus, we can say that Marx's  misconception about complete dependence of the moral from order of society have destroyed the real socialism. The misconception, which contradict to Marx's the same, though borrowed him from Darwin, conception of the origin of man from apes. At all stage of evolution to man, no morality in animals, including monkeys, was not. And in a man it does not appear immediately jump. It evolves gradually, with man and society. Therefore, there was no reason to assume that under socialism the morality of people, especially those in power, rises abruptly to absolute.
      Under capitalism, at first glance it seems that morality has no relation to the economy
, to crises and to the present one, in particular. The dominant view that the capitalist engine of the economy is not morality, not a conscious concern of each of the interests of society as a whole, but the selfish interest of each and the capitalist and the worker. Some chases for profits, others for high wages, and as a result of the whole society gets richer. Everyone cares about their interest, but this interest, unlike socialism, coincides with the interests of society as a whole. And in certain situations, at certain times it is true. But not always. That is, in fact, a complete coincidence of interests of economic actors, whether capitalists or workers, with the interests of society as a whole is not never, in principle, but there are times when these interests coincide more or less, and there are times when they are far apart.
     And the capitalist and socialist economy can be represented as a game according to certain rules. Only rules in each case are different, such as in one case, football, another chess. In every game you can play according rules, and then the one who plays better wins, and
common interest wins - the level of play increases. But it is a shame for those who played worse. And, as under any system of morality in society there are people who don’t fulfil norms of this morality (a. e., rules of the game) or part of it, they always have been violated: the step and the invisible play a hand in the game of football, quietly steal the rook or smoke smelly cigars opponent in chess, etc. Of course, there is a difference between the games in this sense: breaking the rules in one game easier than the other (easier to quietly play a hand in football than quietly steal a rook in chess). And in this sense we can speak about the advantages of one game over another. (Although it is clear that a comparison can be conducted not only by this criterion). But, nevertheless, in any game is possible in principle to break the rules and get through that individual win at losing common cause.

      Under capitalism in general, stress
, in general, i. e. for some, we assume, normal circumstances, violating of the rules of the game on the one hand more difficult to participants than under socialism, but on the other hand, they have less motivation to do so. Working harder to steal from the capitalist than socialist director, because in the first case the stolen belongs to the capitalist and there is effect of personal interest, he stands out not to steal. In the second case, stolen belongs to the whole state, which is unable to keep track of all it’s property. Further, a capitalist in general has no reason to steal from himself and he straining for his own enrichment. He is in the best of his capability effective. A Soviet director cares not about the real effectiveness of company, but about how to make impression of effectiveness on superior power. I am not wishing to further develop this comparison because, in general, it is all well known (though some seem to begin to forget about it).      

But it should be noted that even in normal situation we can not say that the capitalist and his workers just do not have the motivation and opportunities for violations of rules of the game in capitalism. First, under capitalism also there is the state, which (allegedly) represents the interest of society at large and intended to take care of him. And the capitalists and workers have relationships not only with each other but also with the state. And then there mentioned subjects have interest and ability to violate the rules of the game. This is - tax evasion, corruption and other economic crimes. Dishonesty is possible and in the relations between capitalists and  between capitalists and the workers. But here market apologists are right arguing, that the market limits the dishonesty of this kind. Indeed, in relations with partners more profitable to be honest, otherwise sooner or later no one wants to carry with you affairs. As for cheating the workers with wages, then under normal competition that is also not profitable to do, the workers will go to whoever pays them better. Ability of capitalists and workers to violate rules of the game reduces the potential effectiveness of the capitalist system, but not to such an extent as under socialism. That is, under capitalism, economic efficiency also depends on the moral state of society, from the conscious implementation of the rules of the game by all the players, but in normal situation it depends less than under socialism. But all this - in normal condition.
     Without specifying
what is a normal condition under capitalism, I want to draw attention to the fact that no society resides permanently in the same condition. Change, development, evolution is a universal law of nature, extended to society also. And it covered capitalism maybe more than other formations. Capitalism is the most dynamic  compared with the previous formations and with socialism. In different countries, the evolution of capitalism has gone in different ways and I will not give here its review in all its diversity at times and countries. It is not for this article, not for one article and it is the task of the historian, not a philosopher. I will take the general scheme, borrowed from the historian and philosopher Y. Pavlenko. (Ю. Павленко «История мировой цивилизации», Киев, 2004) and outlined it brief (and in my understanding).
Independent economic entities, farmers and artisans lived in the part of the planet, where capitalism was developed. Some of them manage to become successful and rich, others were ruined. The first began hiring employees from within the last and so developed capitalism. This very early capitalism, when there was a laissez-faire and the spontaneity of the market and competition in its purest form, I had in mind when we speak about a normal game of capitalism. Normality here is that in this phase  interests of individual players - the capitalists, mostly (although still not completely) coincide with the interests of society.

But sooner or later, competition leads to the fact that, as previously independent peasants and artisans formed the capitalists, and now monopolists are crystallizing from within the capitalists. The interests of the monopolists under the rules of capitalist game, existing before they become, i. e. laissez-faire, far apart from the interests of society as a whole. This was the main cause of the crises of the period when the monopoly has already arisen, but antitrust laws have not yet been adopted. This couse was eliminated by means of the adoption of antitrust laws, i. e. changing the rules of the game. This again brought into line the interests of the capitalist game players and the interests of society as a whole. But before antitrust laws were adopted, the monopolists, not burdened, stress, by moral, under the old rules of the game were able to inflate as they like their prices, so robbing the rest of society and making the harm to society as a whole. This enabled Marx and his followers speak of monopolism, as the last stage, the decay of capitalism, etc. In this case Marx had not occurred, that if the monopolists were morally and do not inflate prices for their product in excess of the average profitability, then all it would be normal and would not be need any socialism. But Marx did not believe, and rightly did not believe in the possibility of absolute morality of monopolists. But in absolute morality of superiors under socialism, for some reason, he believed.
      Marx made a mistake a
lso, assuming that the situation with a monopoly can not be corrected without overthrowing capitalism and replacing it with socialism. In fakt the situation was eventually corrected in the framework of capitalism by adoption of antitrust laws, then capitalism has continued its successful development and win socialism economicaly. But  apologists of capitalism, who believed and declared that the antitrust laws - the final amendment of capitalism and then everything will go smoothly, if not to communism, then to any Omega (according Teyar de Sharden), in any case, the crisis already will no longer be, also were not right. Crises, as we know, have continued and the current one threatening to surpass all previous ones.
     The reason for this is that after the adoption of antitrust laws, capitalism continued to evolve and the interests of so-called oligarchs under today's existing rules of the game (laws) again strongly disagreed with the public interest. What kind of changes have taken place in capitalist society since the adoption of antitrust laws and in what is now the divergence of interests of oligarchs with the interests of society as a whole, I described in the article
Современная олигархия» ( and therefore are not going to describe it here. Ibid, I set about how to correct the law, so the interests of the oligarchs came again in line with the interests of society. We need not only create new laws, but also new institutions, and not only in countries but in the world, because, as a result of globalization, oligarchy crossed national boundaries and only national laws and institutions can not control it.
     I contend that if all it
will be done, the situation will be better, the economy will again become more efficient and crises will draw on time. But unlike the authors of antitrust laws, I'm not saying that it would eliminate all crises in future. No, the evolution of society continues, the divergence of interests of individual and groups with the interests of society as a whole will begin to increase again and eventually will require changes in legislation and institutional. And if they are not made on time, then again there will be a crisis.
     Moreover, the farther away, the less all these amendments will be effective.
Even the first reconstruction of capitalism with antitrust laws and antitrust committees and other bodies did not return to him the pristine performance, in terms of convergence of interests of all players in the interests of society as a whole. Did not return, because the market has not returned to its primordial spontaneity, to unlimited freedom of entrepreneurship. These (and similar) laws have expanded the role of the state, the capitalist state in regulating the economy, multiplying the number of bureaucrats to manage the economy. The farther, the more free businessmen, now "free" in quotes, must coordinate their actions with officials to get them all sorts of permits: a license, quota, etc. And in some ways, those who argue that capitalism is shifting towards socialism are right. Moreover, I note, he shifted to the negative side, taking over, above all, the shortcomings of socialism. Since the freedom of entrepreneurship limited more and more, as human nature remains the same, then the motivation to violate the rules of the game is increasing. And at the same time the possibility of this violation also increases. For more officials, the more bribes. As a result, in countries such as Russia and Ukraine, not to mention the former republics of Central Asia, honest business is simply impossible, and major officials at a relatively modest salary live richer capitalists.

  But to give up control of the market economy is also impossible, because that once again increases the divergence of interests of various economic entities with the interests of society as a whole (as in the case with monopolists). And, more and more and more often we have to enter the new species state management, creating more opportunities and motivation for the violation of the rules of the game. It turns out a kind of evolutionary trap for humanity.  The solution of this problem, I see, is to strengthen the morality of society. As I said above (and substantiated this in my book Неорационализм ", Kiev, 1992), morality does not depend on the system. But is there something, that  influence at morality of society? A cursory glance at history to see that, historically, morality was not just influenced, but to a large extent determined by philosophical and religious ideas that are adopted by any society. The adoption of Christian morality was one of the components of the economic success of Western society until recently.  And the demoralization of the society under the influence of philosophical ideas of existentialism and Freudianism facilitated and contributes to the current crisis. Similarly, Confucian ethics, whose roots are still alive in Chinese society, contributes to the economic success of China today.
it is insufficient or even impossible to simply return to the Christian or Confucian morality. The fact is that never before moral was formulated and justified as a rational scientific theory. That led to situation, when any moral concept, whether it is Christian and Confucian or any other, allowed a different interpretation. In Christianity, in particular, that led to the emergence of myriad denominations, each with its own understanding of the teachings, different from the other sometimes to the contrary. And since God is single and the truth is single, then the question arises, does even one of these religions posseses the truth. In addition, as I said, life develops and puts in front of society and individuals questions, to which no answer in the Bible or from Confucius, because at the time of Jesus Christ and Confucius, there were no such problems. There were no monopolies and oligarchs, no the financial pyramid, not the issues, refinance or not refinance thievish or incompetent banks at the expense of the poor taxpayers in a situation where, unless they are refinanced, the economy falls, etc. Moreover, here were no question: to clone or not to clone, to allow or deny GMOs, etc. On these questions are impossible to obtain unambiguous and meaningful answers, based on the Bible or Confucius. Such responses can be retrieved only from a moral theory, built as a rational science, i. e., based on a general method of substantiation, worked out the most rational science, but finally articulated by my (Философские исследования, , № 3, 2000, № 1, 2001; № 2, 2002). Based on this approach, I developed a theory of optimal morality («Неорационализм», Kiev, 1992, part 4) and showed that it basically coincides with the Christian morality, but it allows you to extract  conclusions from it, projected on contemporary reality. In addition, I applied a general method of substantiation to the study of Bible scholars that allowed for a clear and reasonable interpretation of this doctrine. («От Моисея до постмодернизма. Движение идеи», Part 1,"От Моисея до Иисуса Христа", Kiev, 1999, Part 2, "Христианство"). If the Fathers of the Church (churches) have been able to understand and accept this approach, it has used the long-awaited unification of Christian faiths, which supposedly crave their leaders. In the latter, however, I highly doubt, because of their hypocritical belief that God is single and the truth is single, and because a thirst-man rule, which they would lose by joining, is their moto.
     Practical application of my approach in the current circumstances, I illustrated from the case of
Hodorkovsky («Дело Ходорковского» and «Дело Ходорковского 2 », If case of Hodorkovsky would solved with a single to all business entities and a fair approach, based on my theory, Russia would pass the current crisis is much easier than it is to pass. Similarly, Ukraine is now severely affected economically because when refinancing its banks are not applied my approach. Injustice of refinancing greatly undermined public confidence to the authorities and to the banks. This increased the outflow of deposits from banks with all the consequences from that.
No account the moral aspects also takes place in foreign policy the major players in this arena in the world, especially America and Russia, and this leads to an aggravation of the global crisis and increases the risk of military conflict.


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